Writing the Bible
The Handwritten Unity Bible, a fundraising project for the May They Be One Bible campaign, was launched at the courtyard of the Aula de la Nuestra Senora de Caridad in the Arzobispado of Nueva Segovia, Vigan City on the 4th of May. This was the culminating event of the Roving Bible Museum presented by the Philippine Bible Society in cooperation with the Archdiocese of Nueva Segovia.
The first writing ceremony began with the solemn enthronement of the Bible and a Liturgy of the Word, and continued with remarks from the director of the Biblical Apostolate of the Archdiocese, Fr. Nick Vaquilar and Bishop Renato Mayugba, Auxiliary Bishop of Lingayen-Dagupan and Vice Chairman of the CBCP’s Episcopal Commission on the Biblical Apostolate. The youth of St. Joseph’s Parish also gave an interpretative dance number using the song, “The Power to Unite.” 64 participants, 32 writing respectively in English and Ilocano, wrote Genesis 11:1-32.
These included Bishop Mayugba and the Mayor of Vigan, Hon. Eva Singson-Medina. Mayor Medina addressed the participants following the writing ceremony proper.
Prior to the writing ceremony, participants took part in an orientation session, where the guidelines for the HUB were discussed. In addition, the participants learned more about the passage which would be written. They then practiced and memorized their assigned verse. This will continue to be standard practice for HUB writing events.
In general, participants were enthusiastic about their experience writing verses from the Bible. Roland Repato, a fund manager, said, “I was tense and nervous, but I am honored to be part of history.” Another participant added, “I feel blessed because I was chosen to write the Word of the Lord.” Mayor Medina said, “This will be a historic event that will be forever instilled not only in the minds of the people, but also in their hearts.” Fr. Vaquilar commented, “I have studied the Bible in Rome, and I have learned about how the Bible was originally written; I am happy to be part of this Handwritten Unity Bible [project].” Veneranda Rotor, a lay Franciscan, said that she was happy to be part of the HUB. “I experienced the goodness of God in me.”
The Handwritten Unity Bible project is a national campaign not only to raise awareness of God’s Word, but also to raise funds for the May They Be One Bible Campaign. The launch event was able to raise PHP 32,000, enough to buy more than 200 subsidized MTBO Bibles. The HUB project was softly launched at the Manila Cathedral during the MTBO Campaign’s second anniversary on 30 September 2010. Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, Archbishop of Manila, and 11 other representatives from different sectors, took part in the ceremonial writing.
The next HUB writing event is tentatively set for 4 June in Lingayen, Pangasinan, and Hazel Alviz, Communications Manager for the PBS added that Malolos, Bulacan is also vying for the second spot. The PBS is grateful to God that this project started well, and hopes that with God’s grace it may continue.